An Open Letter To INFJs

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Amelia Brown

Dear fellow INFJ,

Considering INFJs are the rarest of the 16 personality types, I feel it is important we connect and communicate as much as possible. We are complex people, to say the very least. Of course everyone is complex, but the INFJ personality adds extra layers of complexity that are not so easily seen by an outsider.

(What’s your personality type? We recommend this free personality test.)

As introverts we appear reserved and calm on the surface, when in fact, we have deeply chaotic and rich inner worlds.  We rarely show these worlds to other people. We are fiercely guarded individuals, and it can take years for someone to get to know us.

Others may not understand why we like to plan things out or why we do not like things to change spontaneously. Our outer world must remain orderly because our moods are up and down and everywhere.

It is not easy being an INFJ in our modern reality. We are deeply sensitive and empathetic. I am sure you have been told many times to grow a thicker skin, to toughen up, that you are too sensitive, etc. I honestly used to think there was something wrong with me. I cry about things. I feel other people’s emotions as if they are my own. I can sense someone’s energy to the point that I can either cry with them or keep it together because they need someone to be strong for them.

I am sure you know exactly what I mean by sensing someone’s energy. We are highly in tune with everyone and everything around us. We walk into an environment and the energy affects our own mood greatly. We are exposed, raw nerves in a world that often tries to callous us.

We are natural counselors, so people trust us with their feelings. I know that this happens to me frequently, and it leaves me wanting to be able to share my feelings with someone. When we do finally trust someone enough with our sensitive souls, it feels like a release. There is nothing more comforting than feeling understood.

However, this can leave us particularly vulnerable when these people leave our lives for one reason or another. I know that I am guarded, but I try my hardest to let people somewhat into my inner life. There are few things more painful than feeling lonely.

The main reason I am passionate about sharing my perspective as an INFJ is that I want other people, INFJ or not, to know they are never alone. INFJs are often mistaken for extroverts because we genuinely love getting to know people.

I think it is not only helpful, but I daresay crucial, that we take time to recognize that our differences are what help maintain balance in the world. It may seem like the world tries to change us to fit in better, but maybe the world could use a little more of what we have. We are naturally warm and nurturing.

We can never explain why we care so much about everyone’s well-being. We live to help others without expecting something in return.

So, my sweet INFJs, you were born with hearts of gold. It may seem like the world doesn’t understand you. Perhaps it doesn’t. Our authenticity is rare. We should not be so hard on ourselves. It takes courage to be sensitive and kind.

My advice to you (INFJs love to give advice) is to remain gentle and caring for those around you. It is difficult to care and to give as much as you do. Learn to heal your wounds. Learn to care for yourself the way you care for others. You already know how to speak kindly to others. Speak kind words to yourself. Let the emotional scar tissue remind you that you have fought for your strength.

Your quiet, kind strength will bring comfort to people in ways you cannot imagine. People will rely on you, which is what our personality type thrives on.

Life is never going to be easy for us, but life is never easy for anyone. The best thing we can do is try to make life a little easier for everyone.

Love,

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